Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Zeppelin NT soon in California [update:confirmed]

I just received this press release. This is an unofficial press release as of now, since I could not find anything on the Websites of Zeppelin or Airshipventures. Until it is confirmed this information should be considered speculative. [update]I just contacted Zeppelin and yes it is confirmed. This is an official press release. Attached are also some pictures at the end of the post.[/update]
ZEPPELIN LUFTSCHIFFTECHNIK OPTIONS ZEPPELIN NT TO AIRSHIP VENTURES

Zeppelin Airships Return to the US

Friedrichshafen, Germany and Los Gatos, California, June 26, 2007 - Zeppelin Luftschifftechnik (ZLT) and Airship Ventures today announced that Zeppelin’s fourth Zeppelin NT 07, currently under construction in Friedrichshafen, has been optioned by California based Airship Ventures, Inc. It is projected to arrive in the US in the second quarter of 2008.

Airship Ventures Inc, a corporation formed to bring passenger Zeppelin operations to the US, intends to conduct exclusive flight-seeing tours as well as carry scientific and other special mission payloads.

Thomas Brandt, CEO of ZLT and Michael Schieschke COO of ZLT, announcing the agreement, said “We had previously identified the San Francisco Bay Area as a highly promising location in the world for a Zeppelin to operate. And in Airship Ventures, we are proud to find the partner that has taken the step into the optioning of the airship to bring this historic opportunity closer to realization.”

The Zeppelin NT 07 airship, carrying up to 12 passengers, will be the largest airship flying in the US. At 246 feet in length, it is more than 50ft longer than the largest blimp. Using the inert gas helium for lift, and vectored thrust engines for flight, the Zeppelin NT has been flying with an unparalleled safety record in Germany, Japan and South Africa since 2001.

Brian Hall, President of Airship Ventures commented “We are excited to be working with Zeppelin to bring this unique vehicle and its breathtaking passenger experiences to the US. The San Francisco Bay Area has a rich history involving airships in such locations as Treasure Island and Moffett Field and it will seem particularly appropriate to have the Zeppelin operating here.”

The NT 07 airships have been commercially operated since 2001 carrying more than 65,000 passengers and have flown for over 10,000 flight hours to date. It has also performed numerous special missions such as traffic control during the 2006 FIFA Soccer World Championship, diamond exploration on behalf of DeBeers in Southern Africa, and is currently the largest ever flying art project, bearing the colourful and unique artwork of Stefan Szczesny in support of an international art festival on Mainau Island, Lake Constance, Germany.

Alexandra Hall, CEO of Airship Ventures said “The Zeppelin is such a well thought out and engineered vehicle. It is uniquely suited to both leisure operations and as a platform for conducting experiments. I’m particularly excited about the range of science and industry partnerships that this will enable. The view from the airship will be magical, but then it will be flying over some of the most innovative and exciting landscape in the country!”

ABOUT ZEPPELIN LUFTSCHIFFTECHNIK GMBH & CO KG

Zeppelin Luftschifftechnik GmbH & Co KG, headquartered in historic Friedrichshafen, Germany, develops, manufactures and markets the Zeppelin NT, a modern lighter than air multi-purpose airship. There are three Zeppelin NT airships currently operating in the world – one in Japan, one in South Africa, and one in Germany. In partnership with Deutsche Zeppelin Reederei, a wholly owned subsidiary of Zeppelin Luftschifftechnik, a Zeppelin NT 07 has flown commercial air tours, advertising, and scientific missions throughout Europe since 1997.

ABOUT AIRSHIP VENTURES, INC.

Airship Ventures Inc., founded 2007 in Los Gatos, California, is a privately owned corporation formed with the initial objective of bringing a Zeppelin NT07 airship to the US for commercial air tours, scientific payloads, media and advertising operations.
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Airship Ventures is a trademark of Airship Ventures, Inc. Zeppelin is a trademark of Zeppelin Luftschifftechnik GmbH & Co KG. All other product and brand names may be trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective owners.

Zeppelin Contact:
Kathrin Runge
Press Relations
k.runge@zeppelin-nt.de
+49-7541-5900-547

Airship Ventures Contact:
Alexandra Hall
CEO
pr@airshipventures.com
+1-408-317-4310
Thanks to John Christopher for publishing this first on the Airship-list.

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